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“Unusual location--enjoyable stay” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Mawamba Lodge

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Mawamba Lodge
3.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Tortuguero Canals, Tortuguero 10980-1000, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
United States
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Unusual location--enjoyable stay”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2013

A long journey from San Jose to a very secluded spot. The bus ride was typical, but the boat ride to the resort was exceptional. They assign a guide to stay with each group and conduct all tours, etc. We thought our guide, Juan, was quite weak, which detracted from our enjoyment of the experience. Rooms were very basic, but clean. Food was slightly below expectations (edible, but not tasty.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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499 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (59)
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Minneapolis, Minnesota
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2013

This was our favorite place of our 10 day trip. You have to take an hour long boat ride to get to the Lodge through amazing jungle. The grounds were flawless and the staff was amazing! Everyone from the GM to the pool maintenance guy were super friendly and helpful.

When you arrive you are assigned a guide. Our guide was Piero, he was GREAT! He was very funny and super knowledgeable to the plants and wildlife. We had a great time with him and if you can I would request him! You get a few excursions included with your stay but you can also add extras. We did the night walk through the jungle and it was cool but not a must.

The rooms are very nice, no TV, A/C or phone but you really don't need any of that there. It gets cool enough at night that you sleep comfortably. All meals are included and it was the best food we had all trip. Pool was great! We saw lots of iguanas and birds right on the grounds- we also had a leaf cutter ant highway next to our room which was awesome to watch! One morning we woke up to howler monkeys yelling right outside our window. The entire stay was AMAZING!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Schenectady
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2013

We stayed at this lodge on a recent visit to Costa Rica and had an amazing time. The staff was attentive and always available for questions and conversation. We chose to upgrade our bungalow to what is called superior/standard. This meant that it was a separate lodging, affording more privacy since there was no adjoining apartment.
The Lodge is beautiful and located in between the canals of Tortuguero and the Carribean, so you can walk right into town if you want to. No swimming in this area, but lots of water. We weren't there during turtle nesting time (which we knew), but the area is so fascinating. Loads of birds and monkeys, caimans and other wildlife abound in this part of Costa Rica.
We enjoyed great service....meals were served buffet style and were very tasty. Both alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages were available at very reasonable prices. If you're not expecting luxury accommodations, you will be very comfortable here.
We highly recommend this vacation spot to couples, families, and solo travelers.

Room Tip: As mentioned, if you want privacy, upgrade to superior/standard bungalow
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NEWARK
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

We spent two nights at Mawamba Lodge. We were picked up early at our hotel in San Jose by our tour guide Frank. We took a bus ride and stopped for breakfast along the way. It took about two hours to reach La Pavona where we then took about an hour boat ride through the canals. That is where our adventure began!!

We saw wildlife throughout the canals. The dense tropical landscape was so beautiful. We arrived to a giant iguana falling out of a tree. We quickly learned that this was a common occurrence. We were assigned our room number and dropped our things off in our room and then headed over for lunch. We then explored the grounds and the beach. The grounds are very tropical, green, and the wildlife is all around. With no cars for miles we felt that we were secluded in paradise. Our group then took a boat ride into the town of Tortuguero and we were able to explore and learn about their history. We were able to walk back to the lodge which was about 20 minutes along the beach.

The next day we took the 5:45 am canal tour. This was not included in our package but I STRONGLY recommend it. The feeling to be out on the canal with the sun just rising was amazing. The natural beauty of Tortuguero was all around just awaking for us to see. We saw two kinds of monkeys, many birds, a cayman, bats, lizards, iguanas. This was absolutely one the most memorable parts of our trip. We came back and had breakfast and then did a tour around the grounds with our group. We stopped at both butterfly gardens and the frog sanctuary. We were able to sit out by the pool and relax for a bit as well. We then took the 2pm boat tour in which we explored different canals from the early morning tour but it was just as full of wildlife and great photo opportunities.

We left the lodge at 9 am the following day. We met lots of nice people from all over the world! Mawamba Lodge is amazing. The staff is so friendly and welcoming. This is a must see if you are visiting Costa Rica. Definitely somewhere I will remember forever and hopefully return to soon!!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

We have stayed in numerous lodges. But these lodges are a huts with 3 bedrooms so you have no sound proofing from the adjacent rooms therefore no privacy.
The rooms lack maintenance and the staff are off hand.
It is a pity the location is fantastic. The wild life is great we saw hatching of baby turtles going to the sea in December.... during the day .

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

We loved this lodge, the wildlife amazing, friendly people, beautiful scenery and awesome Carribean beach. We went on a few boat trips into the canals which were full of wildlife. We did a very earlymorning 5.30 am boat trip but it wasn't necessary as we saw more inthe afternoon. Liquor is expensive but we bought our bottle of wine in town, much cheaper. Go now before more tourists discover it.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cedar Falls, Iowa, United States
Top Contributor
90 reviews 90 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2013

Two night packages seem to be the norm here, but we stayed three and were glad we did. We never stayed in a place with a guide and group organization before. It was a little weird doing the activities and meals together but overall it was enjoyable. Our guide Anna Maria was a wonderful person, full of energy at all times of the day. The grounds were great to explore despite the nearly constant threat of rain. We had a standard room which was fine. No windows, just screens and shutters. No AC just a ceiling fan. But it put you right into the environment. We could hear the roar of the ocean out the back and the boats on the river out the front when there wasn't a downpour of rain, even the rain was amazing.
The meals were wonderful. We ate too much. The bar was great. The staff was outstanding. The nearby village of Tortuguero was very interesting. The trips on the boats were fun with loads to see.
This was are favorite place on our trip to CR.

Room Tip: The standard rooms are built as duplexes so if you want more privacy, you may want to upgrade.
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mawamba Lodge

Address: Tortuguero Canals, Tortuguero 10980-1000, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Tortuguero
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 28 Specialty lodging in Tortuguero
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Mawamba Lodge 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled in the heartland of the lush rainforest of Tortuguero Canals, Costa Rica, Mawamba Lodge and Tortuguero National Park are worth visiting year round. What makes us different? *Unbeatable location on a strip of land between the Tortuguero Canals and the Caribbean Ocean, providing direct access to both * The closest Lodge to Tortuguero town within walking distance (no need to take boats to town) * Free WI FI in selected areas of the hotel * Complimentary safety deposit box in your room * Unlimited free visits to our MAWAMBA PARK: where we offer two butterfly gardens, one iguana and one frog garden. A guided visit is also included in our 3 day / 2 night package * Private nature trais for nature walks * Exciting optional tours including night walks in the forest, kayaking, fishing and the NEW! Katonga floating restaurant for sunset tours or dinners / lunches on board. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mawamba Lodge Tortuguero Hotel Tortuguero
Mawamba Lodge Costa Rica/Tortuguero

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